Nyack Looking To Remove Fire Commissioner

The Nyack joint fire district board is looking to remove Fire Commissioner John Phillips, who is President of the Chelsea Hook and Ladder Company number 2, after he allegedly brought in automated gambling machines for fundraising benefits. According to board members, Phillips was splitting the winnings with the owners of the machines and he did not keep a record of earnings or tax deductions for them. Phillips told the board that the machines printed Outback Steakhouse gift certificates, not money, but according to the Fire District’s legal representation, Donald Feerick Jr., the board does not believe that to be true and though they did not want to have Phillips resign, he cannot continue in the position. State law prohibits gambling, as does the Nyack Fire District’s policy. Exceptions are sometimes made for fundraising, though no documents are on record as being requested by the fire commissioner for either the district or the Chelsea Department. The board filed claims with the Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court in Brooklyn on August 16 and according to Feerick, town law allows that an elected official can be removed by filing with the Appeals Court.

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